should we manage for Outcomes or Outputs?
Doing a lot of OKR-related work recently, I see many organisations struggle so much with getting “stuff” done – creating output – that they have a hard time agreeing on how to tackle the problems that they were originally tasked to solve – achieving outcomes.
Scope of work in these teams is often understood as a list of outputs (tangible things) and a commonly held belief is that success is in delivering them. It is not only my observation though, that the most successful organisations are the ones achieving outcomes instead.
As you will have guessed, this weekend’s readings are all about outcomes over outputs:
The scrum alliance presentation by Ben Rodlitz and Cherie Silas illustrates Outcomes and Outputs in a Scrum context and advocates focusing on outcomes when trying to improve feature success and team processes.
Renowned author and coach Josh Seiden’s brief (18 mins) podcast episode details how successfully managing products in the digital age requires a focus on outcomes.
Kent McDonald’s blog post rationalises the benefits of outcomes over outputs and points out why it is so difficult to focus on outcomes.
Whatever the outcome of this mail will be, enjoy this last summer weekend!